HAMPTON, Va. – The Virginia Tech women’s basketball team rallied back from a 19-point deficit to cut it to two late in the second half, but Hampton held off the rally for the 70-60 win on Wednesday evening at the Convocation Center in Hampton, Va.
“I didn’t think we deserved to win, we waited way too long to start playing,” said Head Coach Dennis Wolff. “I commended the girls for the effort they put in during the second half, but a combination of missed foul shots and really not the right energy in rebounding in the first half, in particular, put us in to too big of a hole.”
Seniors Uju Ugoka and Monet Tellier led the Hokies (10-3). Ugoka tallied 16 points and nine rebounds in 27 minutes of play after being sidelined in the first half with foul trouble. Tellier posted 11 of her 14 points in the second half and grabbed 13 rebounds for the game to record her second double-double in as many contests.
Virginia Tech trailed 15-12 with 12:09 to go in the first half before Hampton used a 9-0 run over a three-minute span to extend its advantage to 24-12. The Lady Pirates kept their momentum going and took their largest lead of the half with 3:36 on the clock, going up 33-16. Tech would get no closer than 13 in the final minutes of the half as Hampton took a 38-23 advantage in to the break.
Hampton continued to dominate early in the second period and went up by the largest margin with 14:38 on the clock, going on top 49-30. The Hokies answered with a 20-3 run, beginning at 13:26 when Tellier completed the three-point play and Maddison Penn followed up with a three-pointer on the next possession. Tech ended the run after cutting the lead to 52-50 with 6:18 to play off a layup by Hannah Young.
The Lady Pirates answered as Kenia Cole sank a three pointer to go back up by five on the next possession, but the Hokies again got it down to a single possession at 59-56 as Vanessa Panousis drained a pair of free throws with just over three minutes to go. Back-to-back layups from the Lady Pirates sparked a late Hampton run as they went up 66-58 with a 1:20 on the clock. Hampton was able to connect from the line in the final minute to secure the win.
Cole finished with a game-high 30 points to lead Hampton. Alyssa Bennett added 14 points and 10 rebounds. Malia Tate-DeFreitas tallied 12 points. Brielle Ward grabbed a game and career-high 23 rebounds in the game, including 10 on the offensive glass.
The Hokies connected on 36.1 percent from the field on 22-of-61. Tech struggled from the line today, hitting just 13-of-26. Hampton hit 32.3 percent from the field (21-of-65) and went 7-of-21 from outside the arc. The Lady Pirates posted 21-of-35 from the free throw line, hitting 60 percent. Hampton held the 54-46 advantage on the boards.
Virginia Tech will be back on the court on Sunday, Jan. 5 when the Hokies travel to Boston College to open the ACC slate. Game time is set for 1 p.m.
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